Any direct trains between Hong Kong and Beijing?
2019 update – Since January 2019, there are now direct high-speed trains between Hong Kong and Beijing. See our more recent blog entry on this subject here
There is one train between Hong Kong and Beijing. It is a slow train that takes over 24 hours and it only runs every other day. This train uses older equipment. This is not a very convenient way to complete this route and tickets are difficult to get.
Instead we recommend taking a modern Chinese bullet train departing from Shenzhen or Guangzhou. There are multiple bullet train departures each day and they cover this route in less than half the time. On weekends, more trains are added. The additional weekend trains are the modern D overnight sleepers.
Shenzhen is just over the border from Hong Kong and can be reached easily by subway or by bus. Watch these videos about commuting between Hong Kong and the Shenzhen north railway station.
Trains between Shenzhen and Beijing
There are two pairs of daytime bullet trains daily between Shenzhen and Beijing with a travel time of about 10 hours or less. The trains depart in the morning and arrive in early to mid-evening. These trains depart from the Futian station in Shenzhen and from the Beijing West station in Beijing. Coming from Hong Kong, it is difficult to make the first train departing from Shenzhen at 7h27. However, since hotels are cheaper in Shenzhen than Hong Kong, it makes sense to spend the previous night in Shenzhen if you wish to take the first train.
Shenzhen – Beijing train timetable (bullet trains)
|G71||7:27||18:03||10 h 36 min|
|G79||10:00||18:45||8 h 45 min|
|G72||7:43||18:21||10 h 38 min|
|G80||11:20||21:49||10 h 29 min|
On weekends (Friday-Saturday-Sunday-Monday) additional trains are added. These are four pairs of overnight D trains. These are modern and comfortable trains. The trains depart in early evening and arrive in early morning. A very practical schedule. These trains are quite convenient as you do not waste daylight to travel and you save on the cost of a hotel room for that night. Unlike the G trains, these depart and arrive at the Shenzhen north station. Watch this video and see what D overnight trains are like:
Shenzhen – Beijing train timetable (overnight trains)
|D901||20:10||7:06||10 h 56 min|
|D903||20:15||7:11||10 h 56 min|
|D909||20:20||7:16||10 h 56 min|
|D927||20:25||7:26||11 h 00 min|
|D902||19:40||6:56||11 h 16 min|
|D904||19:45||7:01||11 h 16 min|
|D910||19:50||7:13||11 h 23 min|
|D928||19:55||7:18||11 h 23 min|
Business class: ¥2939
1st class: ¥1488
2nd class: ¥944.5
D overnight trains
Soft sleeper: ¥999
2nc class seat: ¥756
Note that the railway company is currently experimenting with flexible pricing on these overnight D trains based on supply and demand. Therefore the prices are not always fixed. There is also a substantial difference between upper and lower beds. Also note that there is no child discount for sleepers on overnight D trains.
Another option: Guangzhou
In addition to Shenzhen, there are even more trains to Beijing from the Guangzhou south station, both G and D trains. However, getting to Guangzhou from Hong Kong is not as easy as getting to Shenzhen that is just across the border. We believe that there are enough good options from Shenzhen that going through Guangzhou is not necessary unless the Shenzhen trains are sold out.